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The government has allocated RM1.9 billion for the management and development of Islamic affairs in Budget 2024, says Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.

He said this included the construction of two Islamic educational institutions, namely SM Integrasi Sains Tahfiz in Bukit Jalil and SMK Agama Jempol in Negeri Sembilan at a cost of RM220 million.

He said a total of RM150 million was also provided to the Department of Islamic Development Malaysia (JAKIM) to maintain and upgrade the infrastructure of Islamic educational institutions, including religious schools, and registered pondok and tahfiz institutions.

"InsyaAllah, the organisation of knowledge gatherings by Islamic figures and scholars throughout the country, especially at the Seri Perdana Complex, will continue and be increased, in order to raise the understanding and appreciation of religious knowledge among Muslims," he said when tabling the Budget in the Dewan Rakyat today.

To appreciate the services and great role of more than 70,000 religious teachers, imams and other religious staff at the community level, Anwar said the government agreed to provide a special increased contribution of RM700 directly to them, with an allocation of over RM50 million.

He said the Unity Government had also decided to restore the grant assistance of RM20,000 to all ‘Sekolah Agama Rakyat’ registered under JAKIM which had been halted since 2003.

"The restoration of this grant is hoped to support the function of Sekolah Agama Rakyat in producing a new generation of Muslims who are balanced in their worldly and spiritual knowledge," he said.

Source: BERNAMA News Agency